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miamizsun  ((3261.3 Miles SE of RP))
Nov 30, 2017 - 12:34pm

an email i got from peter diamandis...


Earlier this month, 13 U.S. government agencies (NOAA, NASA, DOE, etc.) concluded that climate change is real and caused mainly by human activity.

There is no question that this is happening...

The only question now is: what do we do about it?

This blog looks at four options:

Pass government legislation that incentivizes carbon abatementDrive mass adoption of solar energy and battery technologyAdapt ourselves and our civilization to the changing climateInvest in geoscale engineering projects         

Let’s dive in.

1. Government Regulation and Top-Down Incentives

We’ve seen many government debates, laws passed and treaties signed. We’ve heard a lot about the efficacy of cap and trade, taxing carbon, and other regulations that incentivize carbon abatement.

While we should rally behind policies that can assist in slowing the rise of global temperatures, forgive me if I don’t depend on this option to handle the problem. 

Many special interests and scientifically ignorant members of the electorate make this option unlikely and risky to baseline as our primary strategy.

The time for radical action is now. 

2. Make Renewables so Cheap that they KILL Fossil Fuels 

Society faced a similar environmental crisis 120 years ago...

At the end of the 19th century, London was becoming uninhabitable because of the accumulation of horse manure.

As citizens moved from the rural countryside to the urban cities, they brought with them their motive force, the horse, and the piles of horse manure piled up rapidly, bringing disease. People were absolutely panicked. Because of their anchoring bias, they couldn’t imagine any other possible solutions. No one had any idea that a disruptive technology — the automobile — was coming.

What is today’s equivalent transformative technology? Clearly, it’s the mass adoption of renewal energy: solar, wind, geothermal and nuclear.

Let’s look at solar alone. Few people have any idea that 8,000x more energy from the sun hits the surface of the Earth in a day than we consume as a human race.

All the energy we could ever need is literally raining down from above. A squanderable abundance of energy.

These staggering numbers, in combination with an exponential decline in photovoltaic solar energy costs ($ per watt price of solar cells), put us on track to meet between 50 percent and 100 percent of the world’s energy production from solar (and other renewables) in the next 20 years.

Even better, the poorest countries in the world are the sunniest. 

Climate Change Tech 1.png

At the same time that renewable energy sources are on the rise, the demise of the internal combustion car is synergistically bringing about the end of the era of fossil fuels. 

India, France, Britain and Norway have already completely ditched gas and diesel cars in favor of cleaner electric vehicles. At least 10 other countries (including China and India) have set sales targets for electric cars.

In the last year alone, every manufacturer has announced aggressive plans for electric vehicles. Ford Motor Company, for example, is investing $4.5 billion in electric cars, adding 13 electric cars and hybrids by 2020, making more than 40 percent of its lines electrified. 

An EV market of two models in 2010 has climbed to more than 25 models today.

At the same time, many automotive companies (e.g. Volvo) have announced the end of the internal combustion car altogether.

Batteries: It’s next reasonable to ask whether the required battery technology will advance fast enough to give us the storage capacity needed for an “all-electric economy.”

The following chart shows that the battery performance pricing ($/kWh) is dropping 2x faster than even the optimists projected.

Climate Change Tech 2.png

The bottom line: Our second option for combating climate change is to make renewable energy so cheap, such a ‘no-brainer’, that fossil fuels disappear for the same reason the Stone Age vanished: Not for a lack of stones, but for a 10x better option. 

Abundance-minded entrepreneurs have the option to make solar and renewables easier, cheaper, and better, putting the petroleum, natural gas and coal industries out of business. 

3. Adapting to a Warmer World

The Earth’s environment has been continuously changing for more than 4 billion years. 

When life first emerged on Earth, our atmosphere was a deadly combination of carbon dioxide, ammonia and methane. Then, about 3 billion years ago, a poisonous and corrosive gas called oxygen came about from a process called “photosynthesis,” a process that transformed the climate and killed much of the existing life forms. 

Ultimately life, whether it is microbial or homo sapiens, changes the environment. Our challenge today is the speed with which humanity’s use of fossil fuels has destabilized our ecosystem.

So, the question is, in parallel with items 1, 2 and 4 in this blog, do we accelerate our efforts to adopt to these changes as well? 

One such example comes from China, where a team of scientists have successfully modified rice to grow in saltwater, which will allow them to feed their populace as sea levels rise. Cornell University projects that 2 billion people – around 20% of the world’s population – are at risk of being displaced by rising sea levels.

4. Geoscale Engineering: A Solution in Space

I recently had a conversation with a billionaire friend of mine from Silicon Valley who is committing his wealth and intellect to solving our climate problem. He’s tired of all the inaction and sees the climate crisis as one of humanity’s greatest existential threats today. 

One solution that I discussed with him that I find compelling and elegant is called a “sunshade.”

Imagine a large, deployable mega-structure that sits between the Earth and the Sun, and blocks out very small ( 

The preferred location for such a sunshade is near the Earth-Sun inner Lagrange point (L1) in an orbit with the same 1-year period as the Earth, and in-line with the Sun at a distance ≥ 1,500,000 kilometers from Earth.

While researching the idea, I found three well documented write-ups:

In 1989, James Early (from the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory) proposed putting a giant, 2000 km-wide glass deflector at L1.A 1992 NASA report suggested lifting 55,000 “solar sails” into orbit at L1, each with an area of 100 km2, blocking about 1 percent of sunlight.In 2007, Roger Angel (an astronomer from the University of Arizona), suggested creating a “cloud” of tiny sunshades at L1, each weighing about 1.2g and measuring 60cm in diameter.

All of these proposals have their respective limitations, whether it be cost, technical feasibility, and so on. 

Roger Angel’s solution, which proposed millions of micro-shades rather than one large, expensive structure, has various pros and cons. It’s estimated that his concept could be developed and deployed in 25 years at a cost of a few trillion dollars, 

This is just one example of many geoscale engineering projects worth exploring.

Others (which I don’t like as much, because they may not be as easily reversible and controllable) include documented ideas like seeding our oceans with iron to increase the growth of plankton, or deliberately injecting the stratosphere with sulphur compounds to increase the Earth's reflectivity.

Clearly, I can’t put forth this option without acknowledging that we can’t fully know the secondary effects of these efforts. As Jim Haywood, professor of Atmospheric Science at University of Exeter said in an interview, “…there’s a healthy fear surrounding a technique that, without being hyperbolic, would aim to hack the planet’s climate and block out the sun.”

Final Thoughts

We can either wait for climate change to continue to decimate elements of our society, or we can begin focusing aggressively on solutions.

Given our access to exponential technologies, I am far more hopeful about our ability to address the climate crisis today, rather than 50, or even 20, years ago.

We can fix the problem — we just need to focus our intellect, resources and technology, and focus it fast. 

Over the next decade, as climate change becomes more devastating and visible, great thinkers and entrepreneurs will emerge with even more surprising solutions to help tackle this grand challenge. 

As I have often said, the world’s biggest problems are the world’s biggest business opportunities.




 
R_P
Nov 29, 2017 - 2:07pm

Another page from the creationist playbook...
New study uncovers the 'keystone domino' strategy of climate denial
How climate denial blogs misinform so many people with such poor scientific arguments.
 
 
 
Antigone  (A house, in a Virginian Valley)
Nov 3, 2017 - 4:13pm

I want to read this book sometime.


 
Red_Dragon
Nov 3, 2017 - 3:47pm

duh...
 
miamizsun  ((3261.3 Miles SE of RP))
Oct 18, 2017 - 11:48am

short version of his presentation...



 
R_P
Sep 13, 2017 - 10:54am

I Was an Exxon-Funded Climate Scientist

ExxonMobil’s deliberate attempts to sow doubt on the reality and urgency of climate change and their donations to front groups to disseminate false information about climate change have been public knowledge for a long time, now.

Investigative reports in 2015 revealed that Exxon had its own scientists doing its own climate modeling as far back as the 1970s: science and modeling that was not only accurate, but that was being used to plan for the company’s future.

Now, a peer-reviewed study published August 23 has confirmed that what Exxon was saying internally about climate change was quantitatively very different from their public statements.

Specifically, researchers Geoffrey Supran and Naomi Oreskes found that at least 80 percent of the internal documents and peer-reviewed publications they studied from between 1977 and 2014 were consistent with the state of the science – acknowledging that climate change is real and caused by humans, and identifying “reasonable uncertainties” that any climate scientist would agree with at the time.

Yet over 80 percent of Exxon’s editorial-style paid advertisements over the same period specifically focused on uncertainty and doubt, the study found.

The stark contrast between internally discussing cutting-edge climate research while externally conducting a climate disinformation campaign is enough to blow many minds. What was going on at Exxon?

I have a unique perspective – because I was there. (...)


 
Red_Dragon
Sep 7, 2017 - 12:58pm

 maryte wrote:
This series of interactive graphs really show what the problem is (unless, of course, you're data-averse):

What's Really Warming the World? Climate deniers blame natural factors; NASA data proves otherwise
 
NASA participating in Chinese climate change myth! Fake news! Sad!


 
NoEnzLefttoSplit
Sep 7, 2017 - 12:35pm

 maryte wrote:
This series of interactive graphs really show what the problem is (unless, of course, you're data-averse):

What's Really Warming the World? Climate deniers blame natural factors; NASA data proves otherwise
 
wow, that last chart is an amazing match. I didn't expect that to be so close.
 
maryte  (Blinding You With Library Science!)
Sep 7, 2017 - 12:31pm

This series of interactive graphs really show what the problem is (unless, of course, you're data-averse):

What's Really Warming the World? Climate deniers blame natural factors; NASA data proves otherwise

 
haresfur  (The Golden Triangle)
Jun 29, 2017 - 5:16pm

 kcar wrote:


Ricky Bobby Perry is the definition of "empty suit." I see that he's still trying to raise his IQ with those "I am serious and intelligent" glasses. 

 
If Rick Perry was correct that people are contributing to climate change but only a small part of the contribution, the conclusion is that we have to alter our behavior sooner and more radically. Maybe cutting our emissions in half would be enough if we are the major cause, but if we are only a minor contributor (we are a major contributor, but for the sake of discussion), then we have to make proportionally greater change to have the same effect.

TL;DR: get your thumb out of your butt and cut emissions
 
kcar
Jun 29, 2017 - 2:23pm

 R_P wrote:


 

Ricky Bobby Perry is the definition of "empty suit." I see that he's still trying to raise his IQ with those "I am serious and intelligent" glasses. 
 
R_P
Jun 29, 2017 - 11:06am


 
R_P
Jun 27, 2017 - 2:34pm


 
Antigone  (A house, in a Virginian Valley)
Mar 28, 2017 - 7:16am


 
 
 
 
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